Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Your Words Do Matter

We all have those days. You know the kind. The days when you look back at some of your writing and wonder why on earth you ever thought you could call yourself a writer.

I went through some of those days recently. I was doing some revisions and that self-doubt about strangled me. Why was I even writing? Would it ever make a difference?

And then I got this email from a fellow blogger:

Yep I will be doing admin work and supervising other admin staff. I
meant to tell you that during my phone interview they asked how I
motivate staff. I told them about the blessing sheet, because I used
it at my last temp job. I told them how people would remind me to put
stuff on the sheet and then I would put their items on the sheet just
as a reminder that even when things are tough good things happen. It
helped morale. The interviewers liked it too.

She'd read my story in Chicken Soup: Count your Blessings and had actually put into practice what I'd written.

Now I call that a blessing and also a little reminder that what we write can make a difference even when we think it doesn't.

Her note was my little push to keep going.

So if you are having one of those days, one of those weeks, have hope. We never know how our words are being used.

When was the last time you were given a boost of affirmation to keep on writing?


Jody Hedlund said...

Wow! What an encouragement, Terri! Every once in a while, someone sends me a tweet or an email to let me know how I've encouraged them. And those always mean a lot!

Wendy Paine Miller said...

I think it was last week when I wrote my Encouragement post and then again early this week when I was asked to submit something to a magazine. That felt awesome.

I want to send along part one. I can't find emails of group. Could you shoot me one so I can send? Thank you.
~ Wendy

Jennifer Shirk said...

What a blessing, Terri! That's terrific to hear!

Last Friday I received an e-mail from a reader who enjoyed my book and wanted me to send her a bookplate so she could have it signed by me. I told her that totally made my weekend!!

Georgiana said...'s been a while! That said, I have great crit buds who keep nudging me in the right direction. A true blessing :D

Karen Lange said...

This is wonderful, Terri, thanks for sharing:) I am encouraged when someone takes time to come to my blog and comment. I also get a boost when I get feedback on articles.
Blessings for your day,

Keli Gwyn said...

Terri, I'm glad that reader took time to contact you and let you know how your Chicken Soup piece had made a difference in her life. The blessings you shower on others are multiplying and coming back to bless you. How cool!

Jan Cline said...

It wasn't too long ago I received a couple of emails of anonymous encouragement. One from someone who was blessed by one of my devotional blog posts and was going to use it at her church's next bible study. The other was from a lady who had downloaded one of my lullaby songs and used it in a video presentation for her granddaughter's baptism. She was so blessed by the words of a little lullaby!

AnooCre8ion said...

That's great Terri. It's always a shot in the arm :) when you find out what you hoped has come true, that your words matter to someone enough for them to say it. I've only written one book of poetry a while ago, but it feels good when I am encouraged by the word, share it and see it encourage others.

You always encourage me, even when I see you struggle with things, because you are honest and open about them and that helps to know that others face the same fears etc that you do too.

have a blessed day.

Andrea said...

My husband is an almost constant encouragement...he wants me to write. What a blessing he has been.

Blessings, hugs, and prayers,

Sally said...

My youngest sister told me she enjoyed my blogs but prefered my novels. This spurred me to resurrect a story and post chapters until I completed it 13 weeks later.

It only takes one to keep the fire burning.

Grace and peace to you.

Jessica Nelson said...

That's so awesome! God knew what you needed. :-)

A few weeks ago I entered a contest and the blogger who judged loved my query and pages so much that she wanted to read my full, then she read it in a day. *grin* That def. boosted my ego. I'll be living on that for at least six months. LOL

patti said...

Thanks for the shot in the arm. I believe it was all vitamin B-12!!

Hmmm. At the Southern Kentucky Bookfest, when readers who bought my first book came to buy my second. I needed that one.

Blessings on a great blog.

ginny said...

Here is a quote I found on my calendar of all places.! "On its own, water will flow effortlessly, without a struggle, just knowing where it needs to go. And so it is with writing. When we let ourselves flow gently, flow without effort...without struggling with our own internal editor...our writing is more likely to go just where it needs to go." Susan Borkin
Her book is called, When Your Heart Speaks Take Good Notes: The Healing Power of Writing.
In my opinion, doubt is the biggest drawback to any writer. Never doubt your gift of writing.

Linda Glaz said...

Every single time I've needed one, God has provided from the strangest places. One time from a contest judge who called and encouraged me out of the blue. What a blessing that was. So, you're right, never give up. If you know you're called, NEVER EVER give up!

Janna Qualman said...

You're so right, Terri. That encouragement can weigh to much.

I had a good kick like that this morning, when someone from life past--who I had no clue read my stuff--left a very touching comment about my writing. It makes all the difference in a writer's world.

Heckety said...

I once read a story about a Sunday School Teacher who taught for years, every Sunday, without ever being thanked or encouraged. Eventually, after about 15 years, discouraged with the lack of any apparant effect on the children, he quit. About a year later he met an old student with whom he had lost touch, who told him how much Sunday School had meant to him whilst growing up and how the Teacher had helped him grow.
After that the Teacher went back and taught for another 23 years, influencing many,many children.

You just never know who you are touching.

Sassy Granny ... said...

It has been my experience that just as discouragement or doubt comes to roost, so too does a flood of encouragements from many & varied sources.

Seems the Lord would not have us sit out the race set before us, but set out again-and-again until we have accomplished the work He has given our hands.


P.S. Oh, wouldn't it be wonderful to have a Washington visit some day?

Amy Tate said...

Oh what a blessing! How wonderful that you learned about that. That gives me goosebumps all over.

Cindy said...

"We never know how our words are being used."

That is so true! I love that you posted this reminder today. Thank you.

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Terri -

When someone comes to me and asks advice on a writing project, it's like plugging my almost-dead cell phone into the charger.

I'm so glad the encouragement came exactly when you needed it. God's timing is so perfect.

Susan :)

Lynn said...

What a blessing for you. And great timing! Someone once said to me that even if only one person reads your writing, write it anyways. I try to remember it's the process of writing that brings me joy, not the result. However, when I receive a very good mark on an essay or a short story assignment, or a nice comment on my blog writings, I also get a boost of confidence.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

The Father would never have put the dream of writing in our hearts if He didn't mean for us to follow it. Roland

God grant you happy surprises tomorrow.

Gaia said...

hmm I have to agree with Lynn, I guess sometimes when I write, I would wish for readers to agree but I must remember we are all different. It's that journey of writing and if it makes one person happy or helped someone, it would have made all the difference.
Bless you.

Greg C said...

I ask myself that question every day and then something like what happened to you happens to me. We are changing lives but we may never know it. When we do hear about it, it is wonderful.

Nehha said...

Many a times we tend to become so busy with our lives that we ignore the gifts God gave us, atleast for some time. I was talking to one of my friends who is elder to me. I was told to take on a professional course in writing and take my skills to the next level. He also suggested me to take up writing as a profession.

All I try to do is to make sure that I keep my passions alive, somehow. Every word of encouragement counts!

sarah said...

Terri...I love this...I had something almost similar. A friend took us to MissionFest last Sunday. A man...a bookseller...and Jewish like me...told me someone had given him my book. He read it...he even quoted from it. He told me he had been raped. He wants to take my book and sell it wherever he goes. How cool is that??? and just when sells had slowed down.

Tiffany Marcotte said...

I'm writing a fiction novel and the characters are what keep me going! I want to share them with other people!! As for blogging, it's comments like yours! Thanks for reading my blog. I am inspired by your writings and your success! God definitely wants you to be heard!! :)

Jeanette Levellie said...

Oh, I'm so happy for you, Terri. This is great!

Just today I got an email from a top author who's published 15 books, saying my blog post inspired him. That made my day.

Your edits on my last ms. are helping me. A lot. So, you DO make a dent in the world's boo-boos.

Lin Floyd said...

well since you asked on our recent trip to california, I decided to read my children's poems some of them out loud to my hubby for suggestions on improving them. Only to discover they sound terrible, no rhythm and few rhymes so I worked some on a few then sat it aside. On the way home yesterday, I decided to relook at them and read quite a few and I liked them. It was like a new set of eyes saw the possibilities in them and remembered my purpose in writing them was to open my grandchildren's eyes to the world of nature.

Christ is Write. said...

Very true! God's given us the gift, and he will help us use it to encourage others. Thanks for a great post!


elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Last night... the last time when another's "words" buoyed my spirit along, not just in my writing, but greater still... in my life!

The power of the tongue and pen! Oh that we would all be found today spending them on behalf of the kingdom.

Love you, friend. Be blessed in all your doings.


Jill Kemerer said...

What a neat experience! I'm sure it must have felt amazing to see how your CSFS story helped her.

Nancy said...

How wonderful that you got encouragement just when you needed it. I often receive lovely comments from bloggers. They keep me writing.

Rita's Random Ramblings said...

I love forums like FB and faithwriters, comments from others, many of them writers, gives me much needed encouragement. Yes, hopefully along the way someone will be blessed and their life enriched by something we have written. Thank you for this encouraging reminder! Hugs, Rita

Edie said...

How encouraging Terri! I'm so glad that you were encouraged too. I love when God stops us for a moment to remind us that we do matter and make a difference.

Just wanted to stop by and see how you were doing. Keeping you in prayer my fellow pilgrim. :)

Warren Baldwin said...

Wonderful story!